WINDSOR, ONT. -- The Coats for Kids campaign in Essex County is forging ahead with a few changes this year.

Organizers say they had to get creative to safely collect coats. Each October, South Essex Community Council (SECC) puts out the call for new or gently used coats from the community for their annual Coats for Kids event.

“Due to increased safety precautions related to COVID-19, the agency had to get creative with collection this year, hosting drive-thru donation drop off this past week,” said a SECC news release.

Although scheduled collections dates have now passed, donations of winter coats and accessories (hats, gloves, mittens, scarves etc.) are welcome in any size, infant to adult, through drop off or pick up by contacting the agency directly.

In 2019, SECC was able to distribute over 500 coats and accessories to those in need and they expect a similar outcome this year.

“There is always a need in our community for the Coats for Kids program and as an agency we are very proud to be able to help our community in this way with the support of generous donors. This year has been a difficult one for everyone which makes it that much more important to continue the program despite navigating new challenges brought on by COVID-19,” says Katie Ouellette, volunteer and community relations program leader at SECC.

SECC’s Coats for Kids program serves the Leamington, Kingsville and Wheatley area. This year anyone in need of a winter coat should contact SECC to book an appointment.

Individuals or families will be screened and required to wear masks while being outfitted with coats and accessories during their scheduled appointment.

Coat distribution will take place at SECC’s Leamington office, 215 Talbot Street East. Please call 519-326-8629 to book an appointment on one of the following dates:

  • Saturday, Nov. 14: 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
  • Monday, Nov. 16: 1 p.m. – 4 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 17: 3 p.m. – 8 p.m.

Coats for Kids is a program in partnership with the Unemployed Help Centre.